For half a decade, guitarist/singer Howard Feibusch and bassist Myles Heff played together in the Massachusetts outfit Orange Television. But times change, and as the pair left the Bay State behind them for Brooklyn, so too did they leave their previous incarnation. Teaming with drummer Chris Holdridge and guitarist/keyboardist Alex Chakour, they became known simply as Howard. Now, the folktronic quartet is working on the followup to their debut record, Religion, released in 2015. The band is gearing up for a short New England tour with Son Little in late January.
Howard’s self-produced debut LP, ‘Religion,’ feels more like a storyboard than a sequence of songs. A combination of ethereal and dark, mixed with haunting and beautiful sounds, this ten track LP tells an open-ended story of isolation to be interpreted by the listener. Carefully crafted, the album opens into a world filled with twists and turns and is sonically designed using homemade samples, inspired by the likes of Bjork and Aphex Twin. It is at points glitchy, referencing IDM-style artists such as DJ Shadow and Four Tet, hypnotic, similar to the likes of minimalist composers Philip Glass and Steve Reich, and at points reminiscent of the Appalachian folk sound of Fleet Foxes and Other Lives. Audiophiles and everyday listeners will feel inspired by the rich sonic texture this album has to offer. With a religious melodic and lyrical undertone, this album seems to be more of a conscious plea than a mere work of art.